The value of exercise testing and thallium scintigraphy in predicting recurrence of angina pectoris and restenosis after a primary successful transluminal coronary angioplasty (PTCA) was prospectively evaluated. In 89 patients, a symptom-limited exercise electrocardiogram (ECG) and thallium scintigraphy were performed 4 weeks after they had undergone successful PTCA. Thereafter, the patients were followed for 6.4 +/- 2.5 months (mean +/- standard deviation) or until recurrence of angina. They all underwent a repeat coronary angiography at 6 months or earlier if symptoms recurred. PTCA was considered successful if the patients had no symptoms and if the stenosis was reduced to less than 50% of the luminal diameter. Restenosis was defined as an increase of the stenosis to more than 50% luminal diameter. The ability of the thallium scintigram (presence of a reversible defect) to predict recurrence of angina was 66%, vs 38% for the exercise ECG (ST-segment depression or angina at peak workload). Restenosis was predicted in 74% of patients by thallium scintigraphy, but only in 50% of patients by the exercise ECG. Thus, thallium scintigraphy was highly predictive but the exercise ECG was not (p less than 0.005). These results suggest that restenosis had occurred to some extent already at 4 weeks after the PTCA in most patients in whom it was going to occur.

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The American Journal of Cardiology
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Wijns, W., Serruys, P., Reiber, J., de Feyter, P., van den Brand, M., Simoons, M., & Hugenholtz, P. (1985). Early detection of restenosis after successful percutaneous transluminal coronary angioplasty by exercise-redistribution Thallium scintigraphy. The American Journal of Cardiology, 55, 357–361. Retrieved from